The Tories’ lack of a Brexit plan will harm the UK more than anything in last 50 years

Sir Michael Leigh.


This is hugely damaging for the UK’s reputation, let alone the country’s future.

Sir Michael Leigh is saying that David Davis has no authority as the UK’s lead negotiator, because there is division in the minority Tory government’s cabinet and no firm direction from the prime minister because she has lost power as a result of the general election she called for the sake of her own vanity.

Nobody believes that the Tories have prepared for Brexit negotiations in any serious way.

Nobody believes that a new free trade agreement will be in place in less than two years.

And nobody believes the UK will be able to pick and choose the conditions of EU membership it will be able to retain during any transitional period.

The EU has the upper hand – as does the strongest party in any negotiation. Theresa May should consider this carefully before launching any free trade negotiations with Donald Trump’s United States – but she probably won’t because she simply isn’t intelligent enough.

The decisions taken by Prime Minister Theresa May and her predecessor David Cameron over the UK’s relationship with Europe will be as harmful to Britain’s interests as any decision the government has taken for over 50 years, a former EU negotiator has told Business Insider.

“The decisions taken by the former prime minister David Cameron, exacerbated by the decisions taken by his successor, are the most harmful decisions that have been taken by a British government for decades,” Sir Michael Leigh, who was a European Commission Director-General from 2006 to 2011, [said].

“You have to go back to the Suez crisis in 1956 or to Munich in 1938 to find decisions taken by a British government that will turn out in time to have had such negative consequences for the United Kingdom.

“It’s clear that the Commission has used the full period since the notification under Article 50 to prepare detailed position papers.

“The general impression is that Britain has not used the time since notification to prepare detailed negotiating positions. The main reason for that is division among Cabinet ministers as to the approach to be taken and of course, that’s exacerbated now by the loss of the government’s majority and therefore the loss of authority for the prime minister.

“Michel Barnier [chief EU Brexit negotiator] may notionally have David Davis in front of him as his negotiating partner, but if senior Cabinet ministers go on record almost every day with divergent positions on key issues like the single market and transitional arrangements, then it’s a fact that the person opposite Barnier does not have the authority to take a clear and sustainable negotiation position.

Read more: Former EU Official: Conservative Brexit strategy the most harmful government policy for over 50 years


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5 thoughts on “The Tories’ lack of a Brexit plan will harm the UK more than anything in last 50 years

  1. NMac

    The nasty Tory Party has never ever had any sort of plan, and they still don’t have any sort of plan. Brexit was only, and still is today, an internal fight and battle for power within the Nasty (Tory) Party. The sloppy, ill-thought-out referendum, was narrowly won by peddling outright blatant lies and sadly the warnings of the serious consequences are slowly, but surely, coming to fruition.

  2. Barry Davies

    Unfortunately it is the other way round, the eu has no plan, intact it was only last month the council of ministers got together to try to decide when to hold a discussion on what they want. We can safely ignore Verhofstadt’s rabid anti British ranting, and Junkers mumblings. The truth is we do have a plan and do know what we want, but why should we make it public, it is after all a negotiation, you do not show all your cards at the outset.

  3. rotzeichen

    “The EU has the upper hand – as does the strongest party in any negotiation. Theresa May should consider this carefully before launching any free trade negotiations with Donald Trump’s United States – but she probably won’t because she simply isn’t intelligent enough”
    I really do think we need to examine what this statement actually means.
    Clearly leaving Europe will have consequences in the short term, The Tories agenda has been clear to some of us for over thirty years now, it is the dismantling of our state, Noam Chomsky who resides in the United States understands the whole Tory agenda because it all emanates from there. Quote: To Privatise the state, “first you defund, public services can’t work, people get angry, then you hand it over to the private sector”. Margaret Thatcher’s 1982 secret cabinet papers released under the 30 year rule, “the longer term options”, spelled out in detail how they would dismantle the state. Has the EU stopped this, Germany is now doing the same thing,

  4. Zippi

    This is, not doubt, like shutting the door long after the horse has bolted but Parliament should have insisted on some sort of plan as a condition of the referendum, which the House voted to have. What were the £ords doing? I thought that they were the checks and balances? The Government could and should have provided essential information about the E.U. instead of the biased pamphlet that was produced. People were crying out for information but were told, time and again, “there are no facts,” which was obviously untrue! I am getting rather ti-red of hearing about how voices on the £eave Campaign lied. How much truth was told by the opposing Campaign? Where was the scrutiny? Where was the accountability? Spending decisions are for the Chancellor of the Exchequer, not a campaign group. Why was this not made clear, during the referendum, by the Chancellor, at the time?
    Theresa May has been an unmitigated disaster and I cannot believe how much time has been wasted. The author of Article 50 was so short sighted that he did not design the clause with proper thought, much the same as Call-Me-Dave, who didn’t plan for a £eave result and the rest of the House along with him. There has been no forethought throughout this entire process; the whole thing has been reactionary and as much as I would like to blame the Tories for everything, I cannot. I can, however, blame Theresa May for triggering Article 50, before there was a coherent plan and then, for calling a General Election when she did. Does she not understand what Article 50 means and how complex the extrication process might be, given that we are setting precedent? Evidently not. The decision to quit the E.U. is not the problem but the way in which the exercise has been conducted and all parties are to blame. I will blame Call-Me-Dave for stealing time from the electorate by moving the date of the referendum, which, we were told, would be THIS YEAR. This moving of the goalposts, not once but twice, meant there there was much less time for people to acquire the information that they needed in order to make an informed decision and for there to be a PROPER debate. A pox on both of the Houses!

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